Massachusetts/Maine/New Hampshire/Vermont

On the Road: The Best Fall Foliage in New England

Discover classic New England as you photograph vibrant fall foliage, explore quaint villages, visit national parks and celebrate this region with a traditional Maine lobster feast.
Rating (5)
Program No. 20031RJ
11 days
Starts at

At a Glance

Journey the back roads and byways of New England to experience the best of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Vermont during a fall foliage adventure through the region’s most picturesque countryside and into the history and culture at the foundation of Colonial America.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Climbing a few flights of stairs, standing for up to one hour, walking over paved and unpaved surfaces up to two miles over the course of the day.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Take an in-depth look at the ecology of New Hampshire’s White Mountains and their highest peak’s extreme weather patterns.
  • Trace our nation's cultural history through the collections of American art at the Ogunquit Museum of American Art and the Shelburne Museum.
  • Savor the tastes of New England with a culinary exploration of Portland, Maine and a lobster dinner.

General Notes

Special note about the Grafton Inn: Rooms with two beds are reserved for our matched roommates with all other requests considered on a first come, first serve basis. Though all rooms are accessible by a flight of stairs, based on availability, a limited number of first floor or elevator-accessible rooms may be requested for those with mobility issues. All special requests must notify Road Scholar in advance.
Featured Expert
All Experts
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Chris Lewey
Chris Lewey is the founder of RAVEN Interpretive Programs. He has led natural history excursions for Maine Audubon Society and the National Wildlife Federation, is a naturalist for the Appalachian Mountain Club and teaches ornithology for the National Audubon Society. A native New Englander, Chris has taught biology, ecology, and ornithology in both N.H. and Maine. He has appeared on several television programs including Animal Planet's “The Most Extreme” series and ABC's “Good Morning America.”

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Chris Lewey
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Jim McAllister
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Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
National Audubon Society Field Guide to New England
by Brian Cassie, Peter Alden
A compact, easy-to-use overview of 1,000 of New England's trees, wildflowers, mammals, insects and other flora and fauna. It also provides an extensive overview of the area's geology, weather patterns and natural sites.
The Original Vermonters, Native Inhabitants, Past and Present
by William A. Haviland, Marjory W. Power
A highly readable, scholarly history of the native inhabitants and cultures of Vermont, covering the arrival of the Paleoindians, Abenakis and Iriquois.
The Cider House Rules
by John Irving
This is John Irving's story of a teenage orphan named Homer Wells who lives in rural Maine. Growing up under the tutelage of Dr. Wilbur Larch, an abortionist and administrator of the local orphanage, Homer must face the moral dilemmas that surround him.
Call of the Coast, Art Colonies of New England
by Thomas Denenberg
Denenberg focuses on the art colonies that sprung up in the early twentieth century in Old Lyme, Connecticut, and Ogunquit and Monhegan, Maine, and on the great artists (including Edward Hopper and George Bellows) whose work was inspired by them. The book contains around 80 reproductions as well as documentary photography and explainers on the artworks themselves.
Reading the Forested Landscape, A Natural History of New England
by Tom Wessels, Brian Cohen (Illustrator), Ann Zwinger (Introduction)
In this entertaining, informative book, the history of the New England forest unfolds like a mystery novel. Wessels examines the character of the central New England forest through the clues left behind by fires, logging, storms and economic fads.
The Nature of Vermont, Introduction and Guide to a New England Environment
by Charles W. Johnson
Opening with a discussion of the geologic history of Vermont, Johnson provides a lively introduction to major habitats, plants and animals of the state. An excellent survey of natural history.
Eyewitness Guide New England
by Eleanor Berman
This superb guide to Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine features color photography, dozens of excellent local maps and a synopsis of the region's attractions. It also devotes a section to Boston. Handsome, convenient and up-to-date, this is the guide to carry.
Insight Guide New England
by Insight Guides
For a good overview of the region, you can't go wrong with this guide, noted for its wonderful photography, superb production and outstanding color maps.
Founding Brothers, The Revolutionary Generation
by Joseph J. Ellis
A riveting tale of Washington, Madison, Hamilton and especially of Jefferson and Adams. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, it's a fascinating glimpse into the early days of our country.
One Man's Meat
by E.B. White
By the author of "Charlotte's Web," a collection of observant and often humorous essays about daily life on a Maine saltwater farm. A wonderful portrait of coastal small-town life, originally published in 1938.
The Most Beautiful Villages of New England
by Tom Shachtman
New England's most picturesque towns and villages are presented through 240 full color photographs. Accompanying descriptions fill in details about each town's history and architecture.
Colors of Fall, A Celebration of New England's Foliage Season
by Jerry Monkman
Capturing the spectacular fall display from the Berkshires of Massachusetts, the Green Mountains of Vermont, the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and the wilds of northern Maine in 75 color photos.
Coastal Maine, A Maritime History
by Roger Duncan
A four hundred year history of Maine, focusing on maritime traditions and seafaring, as well coastal settlement and development.
New England Autumn
by Ferenc Mate (Photographer), Candace Mate (Photographer)
Magnificent photographs of farmsteads, pastures, forests, wharves and villages from Maine to Connecticut are paired with the poetry and literature of Dickinson, Thoreau and Waldo Emerson in this pictorial celebration of season. With a 14-page section of maps and practical travel information.
New England Wildlife
by Raymond Leung (Illustrator), James Kavanaugh
This laminated, fold-out, pocket-size guide features illustrations of almost 150 species of fish, birds, reptiles, amphibians and mammals.
Inventing Acadia, Artists and Tourists at Mount Desert
by Pamela Belanger
The history of Acadia National Park and especially the artists Thomas Cole, Frederic Edwin Church and others who contributed to its creation. Published by the Farnsworth Library & Art Museum.
The Lobster Coast: Rebels, Rusticators, and the Struggle for a Forgotten Frontier
by Colin Woodard
A fascinating cultural history of coastal Maine as seen through the lobstering industry.
Winslow Homer, The Nature of Observation
by Elizabeth Johns
This biography of the preeminent 19th century New England painter considers the artist’s oeuvre in the context of his psychological development. More than 75 black-and-white illustrations and 40 color plates illuminate Johns’ analysis of the American master.
New England Map
by Mad Maps
A road map of all of New England, at a scale of 1:600,000.

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